“Head Figure Head” more about journalism than about Gov. Rick Perry’s sex life

Head Figure Head, the new e-book from Glen Maxey, details the author’s arduous and frustrating six-month effort to investigate rumors of Gov. Rick Perry’s gay sex life. Maxey served as executive director of the Lesbian/Gay Rights Lobby of Texas (now Equality Texas) during Perry’s tenure as a state representative, later serving for 12 years as a state representative, spanning Perry’s time as agricultural commissioner, lieutenant governor and governor. Of all the people who’ve attempted to look into the rumors of Perry’s trysts with men, Maxey is perhaps best positioned to get to the truth, and takes great pains to ensure we are aware of that fact.

The book is the narrative of Maxey’s research, assisted by a journalist from a national media outlet. Like almost every character in the book other than Maxey and Perry himself, “the Journalist” is referred to only as a pseudonym. Maxey and the Journalist begin their search for proof in June 2011 as rumors of Perry’s impending presidential bid are widely circulating. Immediately the pair find that almost every gay man in Austin has a friend who has a friend who claims to have slept with Perry. For the next three months they track those leads and come excruciatingly close to breaking the story.

—  admin

Book investigates Rick Perry gay rumors

Glen Maxey

Glen Maxey

Glen Maxey, the only out LGBT person to serve in the Texas Legislature, has just released a new book “Head Figure Head: The Search for the Hidden Life of Rick Perry” investigating rumors that Texas governor and Republican presidential hopeful Rick Perry has a history of sexual tryst with men. Maxey used relationships built during his decades of experience in Austin as a legislative aide, state representative and lobbyist to track down the first hand accounts of men who have claimed sexual relationships with Perry contained in the book.

“Head Figure Head” is only available in e-book form via Amazon at this time. A quick e-flip through the pages promises an exciting read.

—  admin

President Obama issues memorandum on protecting LGBTs abroad

President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Four days in advance of  Human Rights Day on Saturday, Dec. 10,  President Barack Obama today issued a presidential memorandum “to ensure that U.S. diplomacy and foreign assistance promote and protect the human rights of LGBT persons,” according to a statement just released by the White House press office.

The statement sent out by the White House includes these comments by the president:

“The struggle to end discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) persons is a global challenge, and one that is central to the United States commitment to promoting human rights.  I am deeply concerned by the violence and discrimination targeting LGBT persons around the world — whether it is passing laws that criminalize LGBT status, beating citizens simply for joining peaceful LGBT pride celebrations, or killing men, women, and children for their perceived sexual orientation.  That is why I declared before heads of state gathered at the United Nations, “no country should deny people their rights because of who they love, which is why we must stand up for the rights of gays and lesbians everywhere.”  Under my Administration, agencies engaged abroad have already begun taking action to promote the fundamental human rights of LGBT persons everywhere.  Our deep commitment to advancing the human rights of all people is strengthened when we as the United States bring our tools to bear to vigorously advance this goal.”

The memorandum from Obama directs agencies to combat the criminalization of LGBT status or conduct abroad; protect vulnerable LGBT refugees and asylum seekers; leverage foreign assistance to protect human rights and advance nondiscrimination; ensure swift and meaningful U.S. responses to human rights abuses of LGBT persons abroad; engage international organizations in the fight against LGBT discrimination, and report on progress.

I give the president credit for issuing the memorandum at the same time he’s gearing up for what will likely be a tough re-election campaign during which opponents will no doubt use his stance and actions on LGBT issues against him. But I still have to point out that we as LGBT people still face discrimination and inequality right here in the good old U.S.-of-A:

• Our marriages are legally recognized at the federal level and they aren’t recognized in the VAST majority of state and local jurisdictions. We want the Defense of Marriage Act repealed and local and state ordinances and constitutional amendments prohibiting recognition of our relationships need to be overturned.

• There is still no federal protection against workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and/gender expression and gender identity. Congress needs to pass — the president needs to sign — the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.

• Even though there is now a federal hate crimes law that includes LGBT people, as well as similar laws at many state and local levels, those laws are not well enforced.

Anti-LGBT bullying remains a deadly problem in our schools and our workplaces and on the Internet. We’ve made progress in combating such bullying, but not nearly enough. Dedicate the resources necessary to address the issue effectively.

So let’s applaud our president for the steps he has — and is — taking. There’s no doubt Obama has been more open than any other president about addressing LGBT issues and we have seen great strides forward toward equality during his administration. But there’s a long way to go yet, and we need to make sure that the president — and all our elected officials — know they can’t just rest on their laurels.

—  admin

Sheriff Lupe Valdez, a Democrat, on why she’s going to the Log Cabin Republicans Convention

Sheriff Lupe Valdez

The Log Cabin Republicans will hold their National Convention in Dallas this coming weekend, and we’ll have a full story in Friday’s print edition. But because the convention actually begins Thursday, we figured we’d go ahead and post the full program sent out by the group earlier this week.

Perhaps the biggest surprise on the program is a scheduled appearance by gay Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez, who is of course a Democrat.

Valdez, who’ll be one of the featured speakers at a Saturday luncheon, contacted us this week to explain her decision to accept the invitation from Log Cabin (not that we necessarily felt it warranted an explanation). Here’s what she said: 

“We have more things in common than we have differences, but it seems like in politics we constantly dwell on our differences,” Valdez said. “If we continue to dwell on our differences, all we’re going to do is fight. If we try to work on our common issues, we’ll be able to accomplish some things.”

On that note, below is the full program. For more information or to register, go here.

—  John Wright

Oh, Mr. Colson — it’s not like we put you on a presidential Enemies List or anything. Because we’d never do something like that. And you?

Coslon“Culture warrior” Chuck Colson thinks he’s directing a one-two punch at this here website for pointing out the truth about both the Manhattan Declaration and Chick-Fil-A. But in fact, he’s obliterating a basic understanding of the First Amendment. Listen in:

( click to play audio clip)

[SOURCE: Chuck Colson's Breakpoint]

Okay, so first and foremost: Corporate decision-making is not the same thing as government censorship. Not even a little bit. It’s common for folks to confuse the two, but it’s never right to do so (even if it’s far-right to do so).

But even if it were the same thing, what about our speech? All this site and its writer initially did in terms of the Manhattan Declaration app was simply note that the app was in the iTunes store and show some anti-intellectual screen caps from the app’s included quiz. From there, the situation played out as these situations do, with others reacting, and some calling for the app’s removal. Apple could’ve ignored the situation, had there been no merit to it. But based on the speech and expression that folks who care about LGBT inclusions presented to the public, Apple determined that this app failed to meet its bar of approval. Americans don’t have an inherent right to be downloaded!

Which then brings to Chick-Fil-A, another conversation that began right here on this site. Mr. Colson says of the situation:

But don’t think those activists will stop at the Manhattan Declaration. They are on the lookout for any organization that dares to oppose so-called “same-sex marriage.” Just last week, homosexual bloggers squawked that the Pennsylvania Family Institute was sponsoring what they called an “anti-gay,” “anti-equality” conference; and worse yet, that a prominent food chain, Chick-fil-A, was a co-sponsor. Of course, the conference was no such thing. The conference’s title is “The Art of Marriage, Getting to God’s Design.”

I happen to know the founder of Chick-fil-A—Truett Cathy—a wonderful, outstanding Christian businessman. Why should they be bashed for supporting a good thing—promoting healthy marriages?

More and more, the forces of political correctness and intolerance are seeking to ban Christian beliefs and Christian speech from the public square. And they are targeting corporations and the media to enforce stringent sanctions against what they deem to be politically incorrect speech.

Well again, while it’s convenient to his agenda to suggest that we “squawked,” all we did in the beginning of the Chick/PFI situation was simply SHOW THE FLYER ISSUED BY PFI ITSELF! That’s it. Period. From there, PFI had every right to proudly stand by their flyer — but they didn’t so that. Instead, they abruptly changed it without making any note as to why (which of course raised everyone’s suspicions).

And as for Chick-Fil-A corporate: They, just like all proudly pro-equality companies, had every single right to say exactly what Mr. Colson suggests: “So what — why should we be bashed for supporting a good thing—promoting healthy marriages?” But that is not what they chose to do! Instead, the company worked to distance itself from PFI’s claimed sponsorship through a series of delayed, uncomprehensive responses. Perhaps their distance is because we showed that the national organization behind the PFI event, Family Life, has all kinds of anti-LGBT/pro-”ex-gay” material on its website, or perhaps it’s for some other reason. Whatever the case, it was their own corporate choice.

And then of course from that initial PFI thing, we found all kinds of data that further demonstrated the company’s connection to the larger anti-equality movement. Connection to NOM affiliate The Ruth Institute. A yearly marriage seminar featuring folks like Focus on the Family president Jim Daly, Prop 8 proponent witness David Blankenhorn, NOM chairperson Maggie Gallagher, and Jennifer Roback Morse from the aforementioned Ruth Institute. So far Chick-Fil-A has not publicly acknowledged these other things that we turned up. That being the case, let us get ahead of this one and say: If Chick-Fil-A stands by their marriage seminar that comes with an undeniable agenda against gays’ own unions, then that is 100% their right as Americans. ALL WE HAVE DONE IS MESSAGE ON THE SUBJECT! If they think the message makes them look bad, for whatever reason, then that is NOT on us!

The main problem, as we see it, is that folks like Mr. Colson just cannot (or at least will not) see their movement for what it is. Below this post, you will find all sorts of data about the Manhattan Declaration and its signers. But people like Colson will never acknowledge any of it, instead working the “it’s simply a good, decent, Christian document” lines. The same goes for things like the Southern Poverty Law Center’s “hate groups” list, with the usual suspects attacking SPLC rather than acknowledging the eye-openers turned up in SPLC’s work. And the same concept holds for situations like the Chick-Fil-A one, with Mr. Colson not realizing that it’s in no way reassuring for equality activists to hear the pickled bun company and its top dogs have support from him, someone who has quite literally compared hurt, soul-numbed Prop protestors to “Bull Conner” and Nazi thugs“, and who refers to marriage equality as “Cultural Armageddon” (see below for both quotes).

If Mr. Colson and his fellows would take a little bit more responsibility for what they dish, then they might not be so astounded when the marketplace of ideas determines it’s their turn to take it. And that is exactly what this is: The marketplace determining what ideas are good for business, good for maintaining peace, and good for America. “Strengthening marriage” of course sounds good. “Pro-family values” of course sound good. It’s when the far-right’s refused honesty comes into play that the house of cards collapses and millions of LGBT people see their equal rights as tax-paying American citizens buried under the rubble. We will never apologize for pulling back that curtain.

**

*SEE ALSO: About that Enemies List, which quite literally sought to use government intimidation to silence speech.

*SEE ALSO: The nine pages of Christian apps that the supposedly “anti-religion” Apple does include in its store.



*SEE ALSO:
The actual reasons why a company like Apple might want to stay away from the Manhattan Declaration:

(A) The Manhattan Declaration publicly and proudly touts signatures from Scott “the gay movement is a nuclear bomb” Lively, someone who this year earned considerable attention for his belief that the Uganda “kill gays” bill is a “step in the right direction.”

(B) Two other people listed on the Manhattan Declaration’s “Religious leader’s [sic] signatories” list are Peter Akinola, a man who says “homosexuality does violence to nature“, and Rev. Emmanuel Musaba Kolini, who has referred to homosexuality as “moral genocide.

(C) Major Declaration backer Tony Perkins has come right out and said the document represents “a struggle between good and evil.” Hint: We’re not the ones he puts in the “good”category:



Perkins.mpg [YT user: ptrvns47]

(D) Five SPLC-designated hate groups (Traditional Values Coalition, Abiding Truth Ministries, American Family Association, Family Research Council, Watchmen on the Walls) have at least one associate on one of the two signatories lists. Now, of course the “pro-family” folks are all attacking the SPLC as being agenda-driven and therefore without credence. But not a one of them has even attempted to (much less succeeded at) refuting the documented claims that got these groups on the highly selective list. Which is particularly odd, considering it’d be in the outraged non-listees’ interests to note that SPLC does make careful distinctions. But I digress.

(E) The most major voice behind the Declaration, Chuck Colson, has all kinds of nasty, hurtful comments on the record that more than belie NOM’s “reasonable and civil debate” claims. Like the time Chuck warned about gays’ marriages leading to “Cultural Armageddon,” for instance:

Or when he compared Manhattan Declaration supporters’ mission as constituting “non-cooperation with evil,” for another:

“This kind of principled non-cooperation with evil won’t be easy—there are signs of a reduced tolerance for that most basic of American values, religious freedom. As we’ve discussed many times on BreakPoint, Christian organizations are losing tax-exempt status for refusing to buy in to homosexual “marriage.” Some are going out of business rather than cave into immoral demands—such as placing children for adoption with homosexual couples. Conscientious medical personnel are being sued or being fired for obeying their consciences.

I say, enough is enough. The Church must take a stand. And with the release of the Manhattan Declaration, that’s exactly what we are doing.”

The Manhattan Declaration

Or perhaps our favorite: The time when Chuckles admitted just how he sees the tens of thousands of soul-crushed people who took to the streets in the national, almost entirely peaceful protests against Proposition 8

When I watched the violence on television, memories came back of earlier generations of thugs: Bull Conner, who, with the help of brutal cops, used violence and intimidation to chase African Americans out of the public square. Or roving gangs of Nazi brownshirts who ruled the streets of Germany during Hitler’s rise to power. Do opponents of Proposition 8 who attacked Mormons and their churches think they’re any better than Bull Conner, or nicer than Nazi thugs? I don’t.” [SOURCE]

Civil, huh?

(F) The app in question was also offensive to “reasonable and civil debate” on a purely intellectual level, with the in-app survey pretending to query users on their support for marriage equality and reproductive choice, but then proceeding to tell them they were just plain incorrect if they fell out of evangelical lock-step. If we want to talk about 1984, let’s start with this “agree with us or else” survey.

(G) The Declaration repeats (as did the app) the oft-bastardized claim:

In New Jersey, after the establishment of a quasi-marital “civil unions” scheme, a Methodist institution was stripped of its tax exempt status when it declined, as a matter of religious conscience, to permit a facility it owned and operated to be used for ceremonies blessing homosexual unions.

The reality is that the church pavilion was receiving a SPECIAL tax benefit under the Green Acres tax-exemption. This tax break was always a bonus — a privilege bestowed upon eligible non-profits that open their private lands and/or accommodations up for public usage. Public, as in ALL of the public, not some. And since LGBT people are part of New Jersey’s public and civil unions are the law, A PUBLIC ACCOMMODATION MUST EITHER ACCOMMODATE THE PUBLIC OR STOP RECEIVING THESE KINDS OF PUBLIC HANDOUTS! A church can ABSOLUTELY keep gay couples from marrying in their own pavilion. However, they cannot receive special state, federal, and local tax breaks if they are going to pick and choose which kinds of couples are allowed to use the pavilion! In this NJ case, they still received the tax-exemption for the rest of their properties, which weren’t found to be in violation. But the pavilion in question was acting outside the rules for this particular state program.

(H) The Declaration refers to gays who are seeking civil fairness as really seeking “a right to engage in immoral sexual practices.

(I) need not say more. Apple is not the American government with the power to stifle free speech — it is a company with its own right to make its own decisions. The technology behemoth pulled the app not because they or gays are out to shut down speech, but rather because gay activists gave attention and light to the offenses contained within the app and larger Declaration, and Apple saw fit to make a corporate decision that led to the app’s removal. The merits (or lack thereof) are what did the Declaration supporters in.

But of course, yet again, these same supporters take no responsibility for what they have said and done, since the victim strategy makes them seem so much more sympathetic. Or so they think.




Good As You

—  admin

Presidential candidates and Congressional leaders to mingle with anti-gay hate groups

crossposted on Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters

From People for the American Way's Right-Wing Watch:

In April, the Freedom Federation will host its second annual “Awakening” conference entitled “Raising Our Voices: Equipping and Empowering a New Revolution” which organizer hope will feature a mix of right-wing activists like Lou Engle, Tony Perkins, Mat Staver, Frank Gaffney, Wendy Wright, David Barton, and Gary Bauer with Republican leaders like Cuccinelli, Michele Bachmann, Marco Rubio, Alan West, Mike Pence, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Huckabee

The following are the list of speakers, some of which are a cornucopia of anti-gay voices:

Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

I see that Mike Huckabee, Sen. Marc Rubio, and Reps. Mike Pence, Allen West and Michelle Bachmann are going to be at the conference and thus will be hobnobbing with members of the Family Research Council (Tony Perkins), the Traditional Values Coalition (Andrea Lafferty), and Concerned Women for America (Wendy Wright) – three anti-gay hate groups according to the Southern Poverty Law Center,

The designations was given to these three organizations not because of their “religious beliefs” regarding homosexuality and gay marriage but because of their insistence in spreading false and ugly propaganda about the gay community (i.e. homosexuality and pedophilia are connected.)

One has to wonder what the panel discussions at the conference will be this year. Last year, Lafferty and the Liberty Counsel's Matt Barber led a panel discussion on the so-called dangers of homosexuality. It was during this discussion that Lafferty made the absurd claim that pro-gay nondiscrimination laws will lead to the molestation of crippled war veterans.

No doubt, Huckabee and company will probably still attend this conference even after told about these organizations and no doubt they will give a false explanation of why they will mingle with anti-gay groups if asked – something along the line of “it's unfair that these groups are being called hateful simply because their religious beliefs.”

But the fact that these folks will attend a conference with anti-gay hate groups is good to know, especially in light of the knowledge that Huckabee, Pence, and Bachmann are possible Presidential candidates.  All the more reason that they become three people who have no place residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

Bring it on — Michele Bachmann mulls 2012 presidential bid

Minnesotans of the 6th district like to send this woman back as comic relief – it certainly can’t be for her skills as a legislator. Praise, be — we need Michele Bachmann in the 2012 Presidential Clown Car! The batsh*ttery and entertainment level will make the GOP primaries a must-cover event.

Michele Bachmann, yes, Michele Bachmann is considering a presidential run, according to several of her aides who suddenly started talking about this with Minnesota reporters.

In fact, the Iowa native (Waterloo) will travel to her home state later this month to talk against the massive spending of you-know-who at a fundraiser for the Iowans for Tax Relief PAC in Des Moines.

Bachmann, now starting her third House term, has proven a media magnet like her like-minded fellow Republican conservative Sarah Palin; both are often quoted, often derisively. This fall Bachmann was targeted by numerous prominent Democrats but proved adept at raising both many dollars and votes.

…And even if Bachmann’s purported pondering does not result in presidential primary competetion with pal Palin in 2012, it will raise Bachmann’s national profile, not normally an easy thing to do for a representative from just any Sixth Congressional District.

Here’s a Blend rewind of some of Michele’s finest moments.

* Michele Bachmann: don’t pay taxes if ObamaCare passes

* Video break: Michele Bachmann – “Sex Clinics” In Schools Will Result From Health Care Reform

* The Stupid continues: Michele Bachmann says health care reform is unconstitutional

* Bush face hugger Michele Bachmann: no interest in kissing Obama at SOTU

* But was there Bachmann tongue?
Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

Familiar names on familiar presidential course; makes our civil rights hurt just thinking about it

Maggie Gallagher, Tony Perkins, Jim Garlow, Miles McPherson. Those are just a few of the familiar LGBT names who have been busy brainstorming ways to turn 2012 into 1980:

About 40 conservative Christian leaders gathered in Dallas on Sept. 8-9 to begin laying the groundwork for a religious-political movement similar to the one that helped Ronald Reagan oust the Baptist Sunday school teacher from the Oval Office. Convened by evangelist James Robison – a key figure in the religious effort 30 years ago to promote Reagan’s candidacy – the list of attendees included many of the most prominent Christian evangelists and ministers, including several Southern Baptist leaders.

Southern Baptist leaders attending the meeting included: Richard Land (president of the SBC’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission); Richard Lee (pastor and the editor of The American Patriot’s Bible); John Meador (pastor of First Baptist Church of Euless, Texas); and Paige Patterson (president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary).

Others at the meeting included: Tony Evans (a megachurch pastor in Texas); Father Joseph Fessio (founder and editor of Ignatius Press); Craig Groeschel (pastor of LifeChurch.tv); Miles McPherson (a megachurch pastor in California who spoke at the 2008 Republican National Convention); Johnnie Moore (a vice president at Liberty University who defended the school’s decisions to have Glenn Beck and Newt Gingrich as recent speakers); Tom Mullins (a megachurch pastor in Florida); Doug Napier (legal counsel at the Alliance Defense Fund); Dino Rizzo (a megachurch pastor in Louisiana); Dave Roever (an evangelist who prayed at Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally); Mark Rutland (president of Oral Roberts University); David Stone (a megachurch pastor in Kentucky); and Stu Weber (a megachurch pastor in Oregon).

Several conservative Christian leaders highly active in politics attended the meeting, including: Stephen Broden (a pastor and Republican politician in Texas); Keith Butler (a pastor and Republican politician in Michigan); Maggie Gallagher (a conservative columnist who received tens of thousands of dollars for her work from the George W. Bush administration); Jim Garlow (chairman of Newt Gingrich’s organization, Renewing American Leadership); Harry Jackson (pastor of Hope Christian Church in Washington, D.C.); Gene Mills (executive director of the Louisiana Family Forum); and Tony Perkins (president of the Family Research Council).

Some attendees have been guests on Glenn Beck’s program on Fox News (including Broden, Garlow, Lee, McPherson, Mullins, Robison, Roever and Stone), and several were involved with his “Restoring Honor” rally (including Jackson, Land, Lee, Gallagher, Garlow and Roever).

Three of the attendees at the meeting have been under investigation since 2007 by Republican U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, a Baptist from Iowa, for perhaps violating IRS tax-exempt rules. Those at the meeting included televangelists Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar and Joyce Meyer.

Other individuals helped plan the September meeting but were unable to attend. They included: Jerry Falwell Jr. (president of Liberty University); Jack Graham (a former president of the Southern Baptist Convention); O.S. Hawkins (head of the SBC’s Guidestone Financial Resources); Jack Hayford (president of Foursquare International); and author Ravi Zacharias.

Conservative Christian Leaders Plot to Replace Obama [Ethics Daily]

So far no leaks revealing what kind of strategies this crew devised at the summit. Though if you hear rumblings about some of them working out an agreement to get themselves temporarily held as hostages in Iran, you’ll know why.

***

**Oh, and because you never have to pull these threads far to find homo-hostility: James Robison, organizer both then and now, is known for his homo-centric musings:

July 13, 1979

Screen Shot 2010-11-16 At 3.15.18 Pm

Times change. Social conservatism gays the same.

***

*SEE ALSO: An October of ’80 article from the now-defunct Family Weekly (penned by current NBC News correspondent Lisa Myers), charting the religious right’s rise in general, and a Robison-initiated Dallas meeting in particular:

201011161607

***

*Robsion has written two blog posts mentioning the summit, but with few details:

A Miracle in the Face of Storms [JamesRobison.com]

Return to the LIGHT [JamesRobison.com]

Note that in the first, Robison makes a big deal out of the violent storms and tornado winds that greeted his guests, as if they are a positive sign. Can’t help but think how differently those storms would’ve been spun had this been a pro-gay (or even merely Democratic) event.




Good As You

—  admin